By WRCB Staff

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) -- Up to ten families will have to spend the night elsewhere after fire ripped through their apartment building.

The Chattanooga Fire Department received the alarm at 8:50 p.m. Tuesday and responded to Cherryton Apartments at 3700 Cherryton Drive with six fire companies. 

When the first firefighters arrived on the scene, smoke and flames were shooting out the windows of a first floor apartment unit.  The flames spread quickly, getting into the attic and moving swiftly over the entire second floor.  Units called for a second alarm response to bring in additional firefighters and equipment.

One of the initial callers to 911 Communications said that three children might still be inside one of the apartment units.  Firefighters conducted a quick search of the building, and all residents appeared to be accounted for. 

While some firefighters worked to contain the blaze, other firefighters made sure the flames couldn't spread to another apartment building located a short distance away. 

It took the firefighters a little over an hour to get the blaze under control.  Hamilton County EMS treated one apartment resident on the scene for an asthma attack, which may or may not have been related to the fire.

The owner of the apartment building said there were ten units in the two-story structure and all were occupied.  Volunteers with the American Red Cross were called in to provide assistance to the victims, including a place to stay, and if needed, temporary help with food, clothing and medicine that were destroyed in the fire.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.